School Choice Week

WASHINGTON–(BUSINESS WIRE)–As 2017 promises to bring new growth to educational opportunity around the country, tens of millions of parents, teachers, students, citizens and community leaders are planning celebrations during National School Choice Week.

21,392 independently-planned events will take place from January 22-28 including pep rallies, science fairs, school tours, policy forums, and rallies in more than 25 state capitals. These celebrations will be attended by tens of millions of Americans in all 50 states over just seven days.

Of the 21,392 events, 16,758 are planned by schools, 2,168 by homeschooling groups, 1,358 by chambers of commerce, and many more by individuals, along with coalitions of policy, advocacy, and education organizations. Each event reflects the community and mission of the individual event planners, focusing on themes like parent information nights, registration fairs, and workforce readiness.

“National School Choice Week provides a unique opportunity for Americans to join together on an issue that impacts all of us: educational opportunity,” said Andrew Campanella, president of National School Choice Week. “With growth each year, it’s clear that tens of millions of Americans are excited to celebrate the great education options in their communities and stand up for increased choice and access where it doesn’t yet exist.”

In seven years, National School Choice Week has grown to 142 times its initial size. The Week was first celebrated in 2011 with 150 events and grew to 406 events in 2012; 3,600 events in 2013; 5,500 events in 2014; 11,082 events in 2015; 16,745 events in 2016; and will feature 21,392 events in 2017. More people search on Google for “school choice” during National School Choice Week than any other time of the year.

National School Choice Week is a nonpartisan, nonpolitical public awareness effort. For more information, visit news.schoolchoiceweek.com or www.facebook.com/schoolchoiceweek.

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Follett Adds Array of New Content for IB World Schools

 

MCHENRY, Ill., Jan. 5, 2017 — As the exclusive worldwide distributor for International Baccalaureate (IB) publishing products, Follett announced today it has added new content from IB and a wealth of new curriculum content support from an array of other respected providers. The new IB content, plus a variety of additional resources hand-picked by Follett’s educational experts, are available to purchase on Titlewave, Follett’s online search and ordering tool, at www.titlewave.com/go/ib.

The IB offers four highly regarded programmes with more than one million IB students attending over 4,000 schools in 149 countries.

“In addition to the merchandise and content created by the IB, Follett now offers products and books from other respected publishers for the IB market, such as Oxford University Press, Hodder Education, and SMARTPREP,” said Steve Siegel, Senior Vice President, Global Products and International, Follett School Solutions.“Follett is proud to provide the top content from these providers and others – it’s the best in the industry for materials for IB World Schools.”

Content providers now include:

  • International Baccalaureate provides curricular content such as scope and sequence guides, exam and markscheme packs and workbooks, and Question bank subscription services, along with products and merchandise such as posters, brochures, and apparel.
  • Oxford University Press maintains a strong reputation with IB educators, especially those working with the Middle Years Programme (MYP) – with content covering language acquisition, mathematics, and sciences – and Diploma Programme (DP), the only DP resources developed directly with the IB. Both print and digital content are available.
  • Hodder Education materials can be found in more than 140 countries worldwide. Specifically designed for the IB market, Hodder has an extensive list of titles to support the Primary Years Programme (PYP), MYP and DP. It publishes the only series developed with the IB for MYP 4 and 5. Both print and digital content are available.
  • SMARTPREP is a provider of DP flash cards, a unique and interactive resource for the IB Diploma Programme. Each set of flashcards is ideal for individual, classroom, or group study use.
  • Cambridge University Press offers a wide range of resources for the DP written by expert IB authors and providing theory of knowledge (TOK) links throughout.
  • Pearson provides an extensive series of titles to support the Diploma Programme written by expert authors.
  • Oxford Study Courses have offered top-quality IB support for more than 26 years. OSC’s Study & Revision Guides are written by experienced IB teachers to supplement classroom teaching and course textbooks.
  • The Day is a subscription online news service for schools, which is fully aligned with the IB curriculum. Its journalists write daily articles and features for every subject organized by the IB Learner Profile and TOK, and include discussion points, follow-up activities and further reading links.

Follett also announced it has introduced “IB Starter Packs,” designed for aspiring IB World Schools or current IB schools looking to implement an additional IB programme.

For more information about Follett, visit www.follettlearning.com/. For more information about Follett’s IB publishing materials, visit www.titlewave.com/go/ib.

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About Follett’s PreK-12 Business| follettlearning.com

Follett is the largest provider of educational materials and technology solutions to PreK-12 libraries, classrooms, learning centers and school districts in the United States, and a major supplier to educational institutions worldwide. Follett distributes books, reference materials, digital resources, eBooks and audiovisual materials, as well as pre-owned textbooks. Follett also is one of the leading providers of integrated educational technology for the management of physical and digital assets, the tracking, storing and analyzing of academic data, and digital learning environment tools for the classroom focusing on student achievement.

 

About Follett Corporation follett.com

For more than 140 years, Follett has been a trusted partner to preK-12 schools, colleges and campus bookstores, taking care of the critical details that make it easier for schools to run, teachers to teach, students to learn and fans to celebrate. A leading provider of education technology, services and physical and digital content, Follett currently works with 70,000 schools and operates more than 1,250 local campus stores and 1,600 virtual stores. With the 2016 acquisition of Baker & Taylor, LLC, Follett’s reach also extends into the public library and global retail markets. Today Follett Corporation is the world’s largest single source of books, entertainment products, digital content and multi-media for libraries, schools and retailers. Follett is a $3.6 billion privately held company headquartered in Westchester, Illinois.

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itslearning Webinar Alert:

UDL and Personalized Learning: The Path to Deeper Learning

 

WHAT: A no cost webinar sponsored by itslearning for K-12 educators and administrators who want to gain a greater understanding of Universal Design for Learning (UDL) and personalized learning and how best to incorporate them into their teaching.

 

PRESENTERS: Kathleen McClaskey, CEO and Co-Founder of Personalize Learning, LLC and Mike Jamerson, Director of Technology for Bartholomew Consolidated School Corporation (IN)

 

WHEN:    Tuesday, January 24, 2 PM EST

 

REGISTER: http://info.itslearning.net/udl-change-management-january-2017.html

 

Boston, MA – Jan. 4, 2017 — The goal of education in the 21st century is not simply content mastery or use of new technologies. It is the mastery of the learning process. Education should help turn novice learners into expert learners—individuals who want to learn, who know how to learn strategically, and who, in their own highly individual and flexible ways, are well prepared for a lifetime of learning. That’s the genesis behind Universal Design for Learning (UDL). Yet many educators continue seek strategies for putting these principles in play in their own classrooms.

 

Teachers, curriculum leaders and administrators who are looking to build a framework for understanding for creating curricula that meets the needs of all learners will want to attend a free, one-hour webinar on Tuesday, January 24 at 2 PM EST.

 

Hosted by itslearning, the event will be presented by Kathleen McClaskey, CEO and Co-Founder of Personalize Learning, LLC and Co-Author of bestseller Make Learning Personal and How to Personalize Learning: A Practical Guide for Getting Started and Going Deeper. Mike Jamerson, another respected leader in UDL, will join McClaskey. Together, they will discuss how UDL creates deeper paths to learning and the importance of the teacher-learner relationship. The presentation will also highlight how Jamerson’s nationally recognized district adopted and built a successful culture around UDL.

 

Interested educators can also join the synchronous Twitter discussion using the hashtag #rethinklearning17.

 

There is no cost to join the webinar, but registration is required. For more information go to http://info.itslearning.net/udl-change-management-january-2017.html

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Workbench Partners with Clever to Offer Synchronized Single Sign In for Students to its Maker-focused Online Communities

 

Baltimore, MD – Jan. 5, 2017 –Project-based learning leader Workbench today announced a further integration with education platform Clever to expand on the single sign in to Workbench’s online communities for makers, inventors and educators and offer complete synchronization with a school’s student information system (SIS).  The partnership brings Clever’s secure sync technology to even more students and educators nationwide by allowing users to access Workbench sites with a single, secure login rather than having to remember multiple passwords, while automatically updating student, class, and teacher information from the school’s chosen SIS.

 

Workbench provides access to hands-on, project-based learning to turn students into makers and help educators teach with anything. It partners with industry leaders to create online communities or “workbenches” where educators, students or fans can access and share free lessons using drones, programmable robots, 3D printers and other cutting-edge technology. Users can also upload and share their own projects. Teachers can use the workbench to assign STEM lessons and keep track of student progress. For an example of a Workbench community using the Workbench/Clever integration, visit Sphero’s Lightning Lab at http://sprk.sphero.com/.

 

 

“Our goal at Workbench is to make it easier for the maker community to create, invent and innovate,” said Chris Sleat, CEO of Workbench. “Clever’s forward-thinking technology and seamless integration makes them a perfect partner. We are excited to offer Secure Sync technology for our communities to improve the experience for users.”

 

Clever’s Instant Login and Secure Sync are secure educational login tools that allows teachers and students to access hundreds of applications with a single login.

 

“The integration is helping us streamline setup in classrooms, leaving more time for learning and creativity with our products” said David Millage, General Manager of Education at Sphero.

 

“We love partnering with exciting, hands-on learning applications like Workbench,” said Ben Adida, vice president of Product and Engineering at Clever. “With this partnership, schools across the country will have one-click access to Workbench, which gives time back to teachers and students so they can focus on learning.”

 

About Workbench

Workbench’s mission is to partner with ed-tech hardware companies to create online learning communities called workbenches.  These workbenches foster an engaged community where users can interact with the company and with one another to share programs, lessons and experiences in order to drive interactive, hands-on learning in the classroom. In addition, the fully integrated and custom learning management system within Workbench allows teachers to assign lessons and monitor student progress.

 

Workbench has partnered with some of the preeminent names in the education technology field including Sphero, Parrot, and SparkFun Electronics.  For more information, visit www.workbenchplatform.com.

 

About Clever

Clever is the platform that powers technology in the classroom. Founded in 2012 by educators and technologists who knew that widely available educational apps could improve both teaching and learning, but that tools to deploy and secure the applications were simply unavailable. Today, one in three innovative K-12 schools in the U.S. trust Clever to secure their student data as they adopt learning apps in the classroom. In 2014, Clever won the ‘Crystal Clear’ award by the Digital Innovation Learning

Awards. It is also the trusted provider of the American Federation of Teachers, who uses Clever to secure its own ‘Share my Lesson’ platform with its teacher members. Backed by Sequoia Capital, Lightspeed Partners, Peter Thiel’s Founders Fund, and GSV Capital, Clever currently has 100 employees and is based in San Francisco, California. For more information visit www.clever.com.

 

About Sphero

Based in Boulder, CO, Sphero fuses physical, digital, and entertainment experiences to unlock the true potential of play and inspire tomorrow’s creators. Sphero was founded by Ian Bernstein and Adam Wilson after completing Boulder Techstars in 2010. We’re now available in 80+ countries around the globe and have sold more than one million robots to date… and counting. We’re here to rattle cages, ruffle feathers, and reinvent entertainment… all for the sake of inspiration and creation. It’s time to defy convention and change the way the world thinks about play.

 

Sphero, the Sphero logo, SPRK, SPRK + and Lightning Lab are trademarks of Sphero. Other company and product names may be trademarks of their respective owners.

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Makey Makey Partners with Workbench to Deliver a New Online Community for Educators and Fans

“Makey Makey Labz” invites users to “go beyond the banana piano” by making projects found on the site and creating and sharing their own

Baltimore, MD – Jan. 6, 2017 – Makey Makey, which produces invention kits, has partnered with project-based learning leader Workbench to launch Makey Makey Labz, an online community for students, educators and fans. The online community, powered by Workbench, is a place for users to share their Makey Makey inventions and find inspiration from other inventors around the world. Educators can access Makey Makey Labz to browse through a growing library of interactive, hands-on project guides, assign guides to students, and track student progress. To view the platform, visit: https://labz.makeymakey.com

 

“We believe anyone can be an inventor. We believe that people should have invention literacy, just as they have with math or reading. Our goal at Makey Makey is to provide tools and inspiration to help make that happen,” said David ten Have, COO of Makey Makey. “Our kits are already being used in classrooms and living rooms across the country and around the world to create amazing things. Offering an online community for inventors and educators will take this creativity to the next level. We’re excited to partner with Workbench to communicate with the world about invention literacy.”

 

For creators young and old, the Makey Makey invention kit turns any conductive material into the input device for a computer.  For example, it can turn bananas into piano keys or turn bits of Play-Doh into a video game controller. Named one of Consumer Reports’ “Best Tech Toys of 2014″ and “Best of Toy Fair 2014” by Popular Science, the Makey Makey kits come in a  classic version which includes the Makey Makey Board, USB Cable, 7 Alligator Clips, 6 Connector Wires, 20 Color Stickers and a pocket-sized GO version.

 

Workbench provides an online platform that lets users access hands-on, project-based learning to turn students into makers and help educators teach with anything. It partners with industry leaders including Makey Makey, Sphero and SparkFun to create online communities or “workbenches” where educators, students or fans access and share free lessons using circuit boards, drones, programmable robots, 3D printers and other cutting-edge technology.

 

Makey Makey Labz is free. Educators set up their class on the site and assign step-by-step guides to students. They choose from pre-written lesson plans created by Makey Makey and educators around the world, write their own lessons, or modify pre-existing lessons. The projects found on Makey Makey Labz help people learn Invention Literacy through changing the ways in which they interact with the world.

 

“Makey Makey represents project-based learning at its best,” said Chris Sleat, CEO of Workbench. “We create online spaces where inventors, makers and educators can connect with innovative companies like Makey Makey to share ideas and lessons. This partnership opens new doors for educators and parents who want to access interactive STEM lessons and provides the resources for students and fans to build and create amazing projects.”

 

About Workbench

Workbench’s mission is to partner with ed-tech hardware companies to create online learning communities called workbenches.  These workbenches foster an engaged community where users can interact with the company and with one another to share programs, lessons and experiences in order to drive interactive, hands-on learning in the classroom. In addition, the fully integrated and custom learning management system within Workbench allows teachers to assign lessons and monitor student progress.

 

Workbench has partnered with some of the preeminent names in the education technology field including Sphero, Parrot and SparkFun Electronics.  For more information, visit www.workbenchplatform.com.

 

About Makey Makey

Makey Makey is an invention kit that allows users to turn everyday objects into touchpads and combine them with the Internet. Users can turn bananas into a piano keyboard or create a video game controller out of a notepad and dots of Play-Doh. Makey Makey started out as a project that was initiated by Eric Rosenbaum and Jay Silver at MIT Media Lab. Now it’s both a business and a project with thousands of community collaborators, with more joining the ranks of inventors every day. For more information, visit www.makeymakey.com.

 

 

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